|The Interoperability and K-12 Security Webinar discusses the technology and funding needed to create interoperable communications between schools and law enforcement.|
Littleton Public Schools in Colorado is home to more than 2,200 employees and 15,500 students. When the Columbine High School shooting in 1999 exposed the school district’s weakness in terms of communication among administrators and first responding agencies, it made it clear that an interoperable communications network was paramount to the safety of the students and employees.
Guy Grace, director of security and emergency planning at Littleton Public Schools and Patrick Hobby, president and CEO of QDS and SchoolSAFE Communications Inc., give webinar listeners exclusive insight into how the school district upgraded its radio communications, access control and surveillance systems to work seamlessly among the schools, staff members, and first responding agencies for everyday use and emergency communications.
The presenters discuss 800 MHz two-way radio communications, including the cost and benefits of implementing such a system district wide. Grace divulges a few real-life examples of communications among the school district before and after the radio communications upgrade. For example, a few years ago, Littleton Public Schools was alerted that there was a suicidal man out in the community. Radio communications allowed the schools to coordinate security and communicate with first responders about what school personnel were seeing on their surveillance system as the man passed by one of their buildings. According to Grace, the interoperability is “a lifeline to the district and police department.”
Listeners also will learn about how an integrator can partner with a school or campus, as well as the maintenance and training involved in keeping such an investment working for everyday use — not just when an emergency arises. In addition to the cost and benefits, Grace and Hobby discuss ways that educational institutions can fund such security and communications projects from community partnerships to specific grants and long-term, no interest loans.